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Sep 14, 2006 06:01 AM

cast iron pan size

alright, so i'm in the market to purchase a cast iron skillet. it's going to be used for 2 people. should i go with a 10" or get a 12" just in case? any suggestions are welcome. TIA

one more question. is the diameter in pans referring to the bottom of the pan or the top opening? and seeing the pictures the sides seem pretty steep, so if they don't slant very much i think a 10" might work. i guess i could go see them at a store somewhere around here, but i trust and would like to hear the opinions from fellow ch'ers

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  1. Get both. You can never have too many cast iron pans.

    (Well, I suppose you can, but two does not qualify as 'too many'!)

    1. Get a 10". I love my cast iron pan that used to be my dad's, but I find it is a bit too big at 12" on the bottom & 14" at the rim. Harder to find cheap splatter screens, crowds the other burners a little, and requires some changes in baking time for cornbread, german pancakes, etc. It was used for 4 people with leftovers for years, and now it's used for one or two people at most. It is nice for baking tortillas, roti, smallish dosas, and any other large flatbread.
      The good thing about getting two is that you can easily make any pressed & grilled sandwiches if you get a nesting-sized pair. I understand that homemade cuban pressed sandwiches defy belief.
      Perhaps consider getting the larger one as a flat-bottomed skillet, but get the smaller with grilling ridges.

      1. I have both- along with two smaller sizes! Love them noth, too. I use the 12 inch for oven roasting. Made a pork roast with apple stuffing this weekend. Use both of them for home fries, bacon, cornbread. As another poster said- you cannot have too many cast iron. I will say, the large pan is heavy.

        1. I have 8", 10" and 12". I use the 8" and 10" most often. The 12" comes out 2-3 times a year.

          1. thank you all so much for your input. i was thinking about getting both considering the price point. however, the kitchen isn't too large and i don't know if i have ample room for 2 pans. i think i'm leaning towards the 10". but i guess i'll go see them in person and make my choice then. thanks again for your help.

            3 Replies
            1. re: ktown378

              Right, they aren't that expensive, and two won't take up that much more room than one. On the other hand, they aren't going to quit making them. You certainly can get one now and one later.

              1. re: yayadave

                And one thing about cast iron, as opposed to pans with delicate finishes (nonstick, etc.), is that you can stach 'em up without worry about scratching them or harming them in any way, so as long as you're not hanging them (and you'de better have one strong pot rack to hang cast iron!), two don't take up any more space than one. Like Macca, my mother's always had her most-used cast iron pans stacked on the back burner of the stove.

              2. re: ktown378

                I keep my two large cast irons pans in the stove when I am not using them. They are easy to get to - and that's good, cuz they are heavy!